The Government of Zambia has inaugurated a three-year personnel training programme aimed at ending malaria, one of the southern African nation’s leading causes of illness and deaths.
Supported by three cooperating agencies, the $6 million project aims to save lives by empowering community health workers to test, diagnose and treat malaria.
The three organisations, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will each contribute two million dollars for the Malaria-Free Zambia programme.
This would target about 1.3 million people in 10 of the most highly affected districts of Central and Muchinga provinces.
The three-year project will train and add 2,500 community health workers to the national health system through capacity-building programmes.
Minister of Health, Jonas Chanda said during the inauguration that the government was happy that the three organisations have joined forces to help Zambia fight malaria, one of the country’s major health challenges.
He said it was not possible for the government alone to eliminate malaria, hence the importance of getting support from cooperating partners.
According to him, the government has been implementing various programmes aimed at fighting the disease such as spraying of residential areas, provision of mosquito nets as well as sensitisation programmes.
He expressed the hope that the inauguration of the project would boost the government’s fight against the disease.